The Nationals have acquired Twins closer Brandon Kintzler for reliever Tyler Watson, according to Chelsea Janes of The Washington Post.
Kintzler is the third reliever the Nationals have obtained this month after also acquiring Sean Doolittle and Ryan Madson from the Athletics on July 16. Kintzler has an impressive 2.78 ERA as the Twins' ninth-inning man this season, a year in which he became an All-Star for the first time.
Kintzler is a free agent after this season and is only owed about $1 million the rest of the way this year, according to Janes, making him a cheap rental for first-place Washington to use as they try to make a run to the World Series.
The Twins, who were buyers just a week ago, have fallen out of the playoff race in the AL Central. They dealt starter Jaime Garcia to the Yankees Sunday, a mere six days after they acquired him from the Braves.
Watson, 20, was pitching for Single-A Hagerstown, where he had a 6-4 record with a 4.35 ERA and a 1.25 WHIP in 93 innings pitched. He was recently ranked as the no. 17 prospect in the team’s system and is regarded as having the ceiling of a mid-rotation starter.